May 19, 2024
Search
Close this search box.
Search
Close this search box.
May 19, 2024
Search
Close this search box.

Linking Northern and Central NJ, Bronx, Manhattan, Westchester and CT

Enjoying Westchester’s 46th Annual Jewish Music & Arts Festival

Even though it was not quite Woodstock 1969, those of us who remember Max Yasgur’s farm in Bethel, New York, welcomed the return of Westchester’s 46th Annual Jewish Music & Arts Festival to the Kensico Dam Plaza in Valhalla this past Sunday. The fest provided music, entertainment, performers and kosher food vendors under a glorious blue sky, free of rain, unlike Woodstock’s days and nights of downpours. Curtailed by COVID-19 the past two years, this year’s Music & Arts Festival saw a huge and enthusiastic turnout, filling the Dam Plaza area, and spilling over into shaded benches where some chose to sit.

A harmony-driven folk group, The Levins started the festival at noon, followed by the WonderSpark Puppets show. The award-winning singer/songwriter Neshama Carlebach performed with members of the Gospel Choir and her band for well more than an hour, followed by juggler Ned Gelfars entertaining both children and adults. Two sessions of spirited Israeli dancing filled the plaza area in front of the tent built to shield people from the sun.

Cantor Inés Kapustiansky, the new Argentinian cantor of Temple Shaaray Tefila in Bedford Corners closed the festival’s scheduled musical activities, and then added a delightful kumzitz.

More than 50 sponsors included many Westchester synagogues, plus jewelry and gift boutiques; several financial services; kosher food services including Masala Kraft (Westchester’s only certified kosher vegetarian kosher Indian restaurant) and Yalla Teaneck, camps, nursing homes and rehabilitation centers, the Hillels of Westchester, Camp Zeke, which sponsored the Israeli dancing, the Touro College of Dental Medicine and TherapyCares Physical Therapy, all of which are available at www.wjcouncil.org.

The Westchester Jewish Council specified that styrofoam was prohibited for food service; there were no cups, plates or clamshell boxes for eating or takeout, and paper plates were instead provided.

The event was organized by the Westchester Jewish Council which may be contacted at www.wcjouncil.org and (914)328-7001, or [email protected], and supported by Westchester County Executive George Latimer, the PJ Library, and Westchester County Parks.


Robert Kalfus has been winning prizes for his photographs since 1970, and was twice nominated for the Pulitzer Prize. Please contact for photography assignments at [email protected] or 917 379-4165.

Leave a Comment

Most Popular Articles